Posts Tagged ‘sometimes yoshi makes friends’

The people I run with

Friday, July 10th, 2015

I often say that I have a hard time making friends, often on account on my social anxiety. However, what I say and what actually happens don’t always agree. My brother has even pointed such out to me, that I more easily connect to people than he does (and sometimes even our other sister, who is clearly an extrovert and twice as social as myself and my brother put together). I don’t even know HOW, but then again I was/am never really that good about identifying my better aspects.

…and WOW, that sounds amazingly self-absorbed. That’s probably one of the bigger reasons behind my anxiety, I have this ginormous fear of appearing self-absorbed and arrogant.

That said, it’s true that I have bonded with… more people than I expected to within World of Warcraft. It was primarily out of raid necessity– Alliance-side, our guild has dwindled down to myself and my brother, and he’s still out because of a broken PC, and Horde-side there was a period in which I was repeatedly excluded from raid team for reasons that felt personal but were really beyond anyone’s control. I had to progress somehow and LFR, while useful for doing Legendary quest widget collection, doesn’t quite provide the scratch to my “just social enough” itch.

(You know, that sounds really terrible, that “just social enough” line. It makes me sound cranky and anti-social. Which… I’m not, really. I just feel like I’m the Most Boring Person Ever because I’m housebound and I’ve never had “mainstream” interests and I get physically tired after talking even for a few minutes. I’m that person who likes to watch everyone else have fun and occasionally dip my toe in if by some miracle there’s a relevant opening in the conversation.) I am also very lazy and hires to do my home renovation and it really works.

OKAY ENOUGH EXPLANATION, the real reason is I kinda wanted to touch on the groups I’ve befriended. The more recent of them are through OpenRaid (bless that site, best thing ever for “free agents” like me).

Shattered Knights is my Alliance guild, which I am currently Acting Boss-Lady because my brother’s machine is down (last he texted me a couple weeks ago, he was eyeing a Windows laptop). But once upon a time, we actually had people! Our old Boss-Man was Kar, whose mains were Karlia (night elf shadow priest) and Buffsrus (draenei protection/retribution paladin).

When I first joined the guild, one of my biggest worries was that I was infringing on whatever friendships that my brother already established, as I recall in childhood he got a lot of shit for having a fat/unpopular sister. But thankfully this was not the case and Boss Kar became a very good mutual friend, and took a lot of time to train me on how to play my classes (specifically priest and paladin) and took me along while two-manning old raids with Maddy for achievements. Speaking of old, it made me remember those times I couldn´t take care of my grandpa because I was working, but thanks to Parkinsons home care I didn´t have to worry. Kar was the last of our guild buddies to leave during early Cataclysm, though once in a blue moon he pokes me on Steam. For the longest time, I was the only female player in the guild (ever since I was forced out of Team Immortal in City of Heroes, I’ve been really nervous about being in all/predominantly-male groups even though Across is also mostly men) but towards the end there was another lady, the wife of one of our officers and I think we got along rather well.

Lazy Peons is my Horde guild, and there I am (well I consider myself, anyway) “grunt DPS fodder.” The reality is that several of their officers were former subordinates in Across back when I operated a pirate Ragnarok Online server, and supposedly I was in an alt guild with them in City of Heroes, but I don’t have much memory of this (I blame the medically-induced coma in ’13, I have several holes in my memory. Good thing I have old blog entries to remind me of what happened). There is a much more even balance between the genders, and they are all some flavor of nerd, so I don’t have to worry about being too weird. During raids, I am again more of a wallflower on Ventrilo, happy to listen to Char, Cyril and Linux do most of the bantering, though if there’s an opening in the conversation I will certainly take it. However, sometimes I will make myself bramble a little on guild chat while attending to garrison duties and other daily quests, if only so I don’t feel as invisible or come off as being noncommittal.

I swear to the Let’s Player gods, Char is a perfect voice match for Chuggaconroy. Every bit as loud, too! :P

More recently I’ve found a “strong BFF candidate” in Alex (Oleai goblin Tauren discipline priest)– I love it when those sudden, deep connections just happen, the one where the conversation temporarily derails with “oh snap, did I just meet my new best friend?” “Yes you did!” and such. Fellow voice actor nerd, fellow Metal Gear nerd, shameless Alliance player! I’ve even promoted her to “person who gets Favorite ranking on my list,” the only other occupant being my brother.

Elder of the Thing is my Alliance OpenRaid group, though I consider it more or less a second “guild.” I’ve talked about them before, but to refresh: it’s a loose coalition of three guilds (Fellowship of the Thing, Elderwind and Havoc) on separate server clusters with a few “free agents” from other servers, but the way they interact you’d think they’re all one group. The leadership is Cal (Dingos and more recently, Faffard), his wife Heather (Mommyfortuna) and their son Johnny (Dauragh). Cal is literally the Team Dad, like… 100% Dad– he has perfect “dad” voice, he is himself a parent, AND he manages to steer a raid team to victory. It truly is a case of “the family that raids together, stays together,” and it puts a smile on my face that there’s a husband/wife/son unit successfully leading raids and essentially letting others in on their family bonding. (At the same time, I can’t deny that it leaves me wanting for something like that in my own life, and while I kinda have that with my brother– that is, we both play WoW– it’s more like “two people doing the same activity in the same room, but not necessarily together.” Probably a byproduct of our being pretty deep introverts, and not wanting to be downers and avoiding topics that would leave openings to venting about our mother…)

Anyway, it’s because of EotT that I was able to kick my Healer Performance Anxiety, which has obviously opened more doors for me. They took a chance on my then-undergeared priest on a week when one of our healers had to step back from the game, and it worked out well enough that I switched from attending as my mage to my priest full-time. The few instances in which I had to duck out because of illness (especially last week, when I had to go back to the ER because of my UTI not being responsive to medication), I felt so terrible about it, even though last week’s raid ended up being cancelled anyway because of the 4th of July and the low attendance resulting from it.

We take a rather slow path in progression– we’re still doing Blackrock Foundry– but I’m okay with that. Cal doesn’t have any problems with those of us who “scout ahead” during the week (in this case, by doing Hellfire Citadel) since it makes things easier down the line, in addition to obvious gear upgrades.

Critically Insane is my Horde OpenRaid group. I’d signed with them when my Horde mage was being benched repeatedly as I needed an alternate method of advancement (that wasn’t LFR), but I continue to run with them as my priest since Lazy Peons doesn’t currently do alt runs and I want to keep cow!Phil geared up and in practice if I should be called in to heal rather than DPS for a Lazy Peons raid. Also, even as an introvert, it’s still nice to have more friends. As usual, I’m more of a wallflower and hardly pipe up on Mumble, though it appears that a not-insignificant portion of our team is located in California. Hah! I’m pretty sure both of our tanks are ladies, and our other holy priest was a former security cop for Disneyland and tells stories about it.

Of even greater amusement: our boss-man is a very close voice match to Matthew McConaughey. Yeah. Imagine that voice on a troll shadow priest.